SLO County Roundup

SLO County

The county Clerk-Recorder’s Office will open Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to ensure that voters who may have trouble getting to the polls on Election Day Aug. 17 have an opportunity to vote.

The special election Tuesday has only one race on the ballot: the contest for the 15th District state Senate seat vacated by Abel Maldonado when he became lieutenant governor in May.

Candidates are Republican Assemblyman Sam Blakeslee, Democrat John Laird, independent Jim Fitzgerald and Libertarian Mark Hinkle.

The Clerk-Recorder’s Office is located in the new Government Center at 1055 Monterey St. in San Luis Obispo.

Voters can either use this opportunity to request a vote-by-mail ballot or return their already voted ballot, according to county Clerk-Recorder Julie Rodewald.

The Automark ballot marking device will also be available during these hours for use by voters who have a visual impairment or have difficulty marking the ballot, she said. Rodewald asks those with questions to call 781-5228.

— Bob Cuddy

San Luis Obispo

A community workshop to discuss proposed updates to the Historic Preservation Guidelines and draft Historic Preservation Ordinance will be held Aug. 26 from 6 to 8 p.m.

The meeting is scheduled to take place at the Ludwick Community Center at 864 Santa Rosa St. in San Luis Obispo.

The ordinance, expected to go before the City Council for approval in coming months, spells out procedures and standards for preserving historic buildings and sets penalties for violations.

About 175 properties are included on the city’s master list of historic resources — those structures that are deemed the most unique and important historic properties. There are an additional 500 or so properties on the city’s list of contributing historic resources — a designation that can be applied to structures at least 50 years old that are publicly visible.

The workshop will discuss how proposed changes may affect historic structures and development in historic districts; allow the public to provide input to city staff; and outline the next steps in the public process.

The draft documents may be viewed online at www.slocity.org/communitydevelopment.

For more details, call Kim Murry at 781-7274 or e-mail kmurry@slocity.org.

— AnnMarie Cornejo

San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo County Drug & Alcohol Services will be hosting the Drug Court Graduation ceremony today at 6 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo Vet’s Hall at 801 Grand Ave. The public is welcome to attend.

The county program offers drug rehabilitation in place of a prison sentence; 14 participants will receive a certificate of completion of the 18-month program today.

The annual taxpayer cost of housing a convicted felon in prison is $47,337 per year compared with $13,000 for the drug court, according to county officials.

Today marks the 18th annual graduation of the drug court, which includes drug and alcohol addiction treatment, socialization skills and job training.

State statistics show that 75 percent of drug court participants who complete the program avoid future arrests and that participants are twice as likely to stay clean compared with a newly released state inmate.

The graduation’s keynote speaker will be Mark Lundholm, a comedian and recovering addict.

— Nick Wilson